By Juan A. Lozano and John L. Mome | Associated Press
HOUSTON — Former President George H.W. Bush greeted some of the hundreds of mourners filing through a large Houston church on Friday to pay final respects to his wife of 73 years, former first lady Barbara Bush.
A spray of dozens of pink and yellow roses covered her closed, light-colored metallic casket in the sanctuary of St. Martin’s Episcopal Church. The 93-year-old former president arrived shortly after a daylong public viewing began, sitting in a wheelchair nearby and smiling as people shook his outstretched hand and offered condolences.
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Barbara Bush died on Tuesday at age 92 at the couple’s Houston home, where her husband also by her side.
Many women wore blue, Barbara Bush’s favorite color, and pearls, a nod to her go-to neckwear jewelry. Officials say about 1,600 people had come through the church in about the first hour after going through security checks and boarding shuttle buses to travel a few miles to the nation’s largest Episcopal church.
Lucy Orlando was among more than 100 people in line well before bus service began, after traveling from Florida. Originally from Haiti, the 74-year-old said had admired Barbara Bush for years, including for her work promoting literacy.
“She was a very sweet lady and she loves people,” said Orlando, who was carrying a gray suitcase containing framed photos of the couple and members of their family, including former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush and former President George W. Bush and his wife, Laura.
Varney Johnson, a 49-year-old local social worker originally from Liberia, said he also came to honor the former first lady’s work in supporting literacy efforts, saying: “This woman
Source:: The Mercury News – Politics